Friday, August 3rd is National Watermelon Day. Any way you slice it, eating watermelon is a great way to stay hydrated (92% water content) during the dog days of summer and to load up on vitamins A and C, lycopene, potassium, and amino acids. Here are 3 ways to enjoy watermelon beyond sliced and diced plus tips for buying and storing.
Frozen - Cut, seed, cube and freeze watermelon for smoothies. Or slice it, cut off the rind and insert a popsicle stick for easy watermelon pops.
Juiced - If you don't have a juicer simply clean, seed and remove the rind of the watermelon. Cut it into chunks and throw it into the blender adding a little water to thin, if necessary. Enjoy it straight up, blended with ice for a slushie drink or combined with lime juice and seltzer. Fresh basil or mint and sliced cucumber are complimentary additions. Not so hydrating, but equally delicious would be the addition of rum, gin, vodka or tequila for a refreshing cocktail.
Grilled - Grilling caramelizes the sugars and completely changes the taste of watermelon. For a savory version brush slices lightly with olive oil and grill over high heat 2-5 minutes per side or until you have nice grill marks. Sprinkle with sea salt and enjoy as is or drizzled with balsamic and sprinkled with goat cheese or feta. For a sweeter treat replace the oil with a combination of equal parts honey and lime juice. Add a little Sriracha for a sweet and spicy variation!
Tip: When buying watermelon choose those that are firm and heavy for its size. Store whole watermelon at room temperature for up to 2 weeks and sliced watermelon covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.